A couple weeks ago this was the scene I found myself in.
I have to say, for me - it doesn't get much better than this. These dear, beautiful women and our cameras and we learned and played for two hours.
I had been rolling the idea around in my mind for awhile now, the idea of some kind of in-person, hands-on class but honestly I didn't know when or where or how until a couple different friends at different times within a few weeks of each other said "you have just got to help me learn how to use this expensive camera my husband bought for me." A tentative Facebook post emerged a month or two later and then I took that one brave step and opened registration for an in-person photography class.
Driving to that first class, if I'm being one hundred percent honest, I was a mess. I felt like a fraud, feared rejection by other women, afraid I'd disappoint my friends.
And then there we were. In the middle of this beautiful moment.
Driving away from this first class I felt FULL. Full of life, energy, joy, clarity. I felt beautiful in the best way, strong, brave and like all was right in my world. It hasn't been all smooth sailing since that moment and I'm sure I've made some mistakes along the way and probably will make more but that's okay because I'm doing what I was made to do.
I knew I had to write here about it. I had to tell you - just go do it! That idea - take a step! That thought - move forward! That plan - start to put it into motion! just do something about it now!
Fast forward a week or two later. I finally have a copy of Emily Freeman's "a million little ways" in my hands and suddenly realize what all they hype was about.
I hate hype. If a book is the best book ever I really don't care to read it. The only reason why I read One Thousand Gifts (by Ann Voskamp) was because it was at the Library (if you haven't read this yet, you live under a rock!! If you didn't love it, try the devotional. It's a little easier to read). I read Grace for the Good Girl (also by EPF) finally, because it was the book my friend and I chose for our first ever small group together.
I have to say that all the gushing about a million little ways doesn't even do it justice. I read Jessi at Naptime Diaries write that this was on her short list of books every Christian simply has to read, right below the Bible, and that cynched it for me. I knew about two pages into it that Jessi was 100% right.
Here again in this book is this call - do what you were made to do! Be who God made you to be!
So I'm adding my one little voice to this choir of saints - do the thing God is nudging you to do. Take that one little step.
Now I can just hear that little voice in the back of your head saying but now isn't a great time of year to be starting something. Okay, okay maybe there is some truth to that, but could you start a notebook in Evernote or a secret pin board on Pinterest with random bits of notes? Could you scribble out some ideas in a little fifty cent notebook? Could you finally give yourself permission to have those big conversations and to say out loud what you've been day dreaming and scribbling in journals about for months and years?
Here is what I want to say most to you right now: it's okay not to know how this all ends up. You don't need to have an end game. You just need to know the first step.
Did you know Beth Moore's first class was teaching dance aerobics?! Don't you think that prepared her for the role God would one day lead her to? Don't you think those weeks of Sunday school teaching and Bible study leading paved a way for God to do something bigger and brighter through her life? You never know where that first step will lead - and that's okay. Just take that first step.
If you're anything like me you have at least one thing, way back there, or maybe two or three, just waiting to get out. Right now, if nothing else, at least say yes to those things, instead of a perpetual no or maybe one day when... Just say yes to whatever next step God might have for you. Trust that he'll open the doors that need to open and shut the ones that need to shut. The next step might seem small, take it. The next step might feel big and scary, go for it! It's worth it. Come alive.